Extensive performance on the antisaccade task does not lead to negative transfer

Gene Brewer, Gregory J. Spillers, Brittany McMillan, Nash Unsworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Executive-control processes regulate thoughts, emotions, actions, and behaviors that are critical for everyday functioning. Recently, researchers have suggested that these processes can be flexibly modified by tasks that require executive control. Specifically, it has been argued that executive-control tasks can deplete these executive-control processes, which can in turn lead to negative transfer on subsequent task performance. Importantly, the degrees of malleability in executive-control processes and transfer to different tasks are of ongoing debate. The present study critically examined the hypothesis that executive-control processes can be exerted and whether or not this exertion would negatively transfer to performance on various subsequent tasks. Across a series of experiments, negative transfer effects from extensive performance on the antisaccade task were not found. Traditional hypothesis testing and Bayes factor computations were used to validate these findings. Collectively, the present results put in question the use of the antisaccade task to observe both near and far negative transfer from using executive-control processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)923-929
Number of pages7
JournalPsychonomic Bulletin and Review
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2011


  • Attention
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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